When you think about jewelry, you might be thinking about metals such as gold or platinum, and precious gemstones like diamond and sapphire. But what if we told you that you should consider adding some sterling silver jewelry to your collection?
The popularity of this metal has gone up in recent years, and many people are now choosing sterling silver for their every day, most-worn pieces of jewelry. What are the benefits of wearing this metal, though?
Look no further: in this article, we will explain what sterling silver is and why buying sterling silver jewelry is a great choice. Are you ready to sparkle?
Sterling Silver: A Bit of Background and History
First things first: sterling silver is not a “pure” metal as such, but an alloy. This means that it’s a combination of two or more different metals, which are heated, liquified, and then poured together to create a new material.
In the specific case of sterling silver, jewelers mix pure silver with either copper, zinc, or platinum. So, why isn’t pure silver used as often as sterling silver? Mostly, because of its high softness, which makes it really difficult to transform into finished and durable pieces of jewelry, and even harder to maintain.
While we don’t know exactly when and where the first silver allow was created, it appears that sterling silver became widespread in Europe around the 12th Century. Firstly, it was used for coins, but artisan and jewelers later started to use this alloy for anything from everyday utensils, jewelry, bottles, and musical instruments.
Over the centuries, sterling silver gained increasing notoriety and is now among the best-selling metals within the jewelry industry. Let’s take a look at what makes it such a good choice.
1 It’s Very Durable
If you are going to wear a piece of jewelry most of the time, you’ll want it to be as durable as possible. With sterling silver, you can achieve just that. Take care of your sterling silver jewelry properly, and they will last you for years and years.
To make sure that your sterling silver pieces are as long-lasting as you want them to be, you need to purchase them from professional, reputable sellers. You also want to make sure that they carry the 925 sterling silver hallmark, which you’ll be able to find if you look at your jewelry very closely (sometimes, you might need a magnifying glass!).
This is the ultimate sign that your sterling silver item is of the best possible quality, and if you look after it regularly it will truly accompany you for many years to come.
2 It’s Timeless
Because of its century-long history, and its current popularity, sterling silver jewelry will never go out of fashion. Looking through old family photos, you are almost certainly going to stumble on some which feature your ancestors wearing sterling silver jewelry. In fact, you might even have some heirloom sterling silver pieces lying around your house.
If you are serious about keeping up with the latest jewelry trends, then get yourself some timeless sterling silver pieces and you’ll be able to show off elegance, class, and style for a lifetime. Whatever the newest designs and fashions, you can rest assured that you’ll always be “in” with some sterling silver jewelry on you.
And what if you have a soft spot for gemstones? Well, we’ve got great news: precious and semi-precious stones are often set in sterling silver. So, you can keep wearing your favorite gems while at the same time being confident that you’ll always look spot on.
3 It’s Hugely Versatile
As we mentioned earlier, sterling silver is a combination of pure, fine silver (at least 90%) and another alloy to add some thickness and durability. However, the final material still features a good amount of softness, which makes it perfect for jewelers to mold, create, and experiment with different styles, patterns, and designs.
Meaning, there will always be new and exciting sterling silver pieces of jewelry to choose from, as this metal is incredibly versatile. So, whatever vibe you are looking to achieve, and whatever piece of jewelry you prefer, you can be confident that you’ll find “the one” in sterling silver.
This metal’s high versatility also means that the same piece of jewelry can be adapted and worn at a wide range of events and occasions. Sterling silver can simultaneously be casual and understated if worn at a brunch out with your friends, and classy and sophisticated if paired with a smarter outfit for the evening.
4 It Makes It Easy to Build Your Own Collection
As a result of its great versatility and timeless look, sterling silver is a perfect option if you want to start your own jewelry collection, or update an existing one. If you are starting from scratch, you’ll want to get some basic pieces, such as stacking rings, bangles, bracelets with sterling silver charms, necklaces and chains, and sterling silver pendants.
Once you have bought some of these bits, you can then build on them and expand your collection by choosing a specific design, pattern, or style. For example, do you love fantasy jewelry? Then focus on rings with patterns and designs taken from nature. Or, if you prefer something more modern, look no further than simple bangles or earrings with geometric shapes.
Do you already have a fairly sizeable jewelry collection, featuring metals like gold and gemstones of various types? Then, you’ll be pleased to hear that sterling silver will fit perfectly in that collection, too.
Sterling silver works really well when paired with other metals and stones, especially white gold and platinum, and clear or light gems such as diamonds and sapphires. But you can go even bolder than that and layer up sterling silver and yellow gold necklaces, or stack up sterling silver and rose gold rings.
5 It’s Hypoallergenic
Cheap jewelry might be good for your bank account, but the benefits probably end there. One of the worst side effects of wearing poor-quality jewelry is the fact that you are more likely to develop allergies.
Metals such as nickel and brass can deeply irritate your skin and cause allergic reactions that vary in intensity and severity. With sterling silver, you won’t have these issues, as this material is hypoallergenic. This is because the most-used addition to pure silver is copper, a metal that is very unlikely to cause any allergies.
So, if you have avoided wearing earrings or necklaces because of a fear (or actual experience) of getting an allergic reaction, then you can rest assured that you won’t face this problem with sterling silver jewelry. Go on, buy those gorgeous sterling silver earrings that you’ve had your eyes on for a while!
6 It’s Very Simple to Clean
We mentioned this at the beginning and now we are going to delve a bit deeper into it: if you care for your sterling silver jewelry correctly, then you can expect it to last you a lifetime. How can you do so, though?
The simplest, yet most underrated way to keep your sterling silver jewelry shiny and looking as new is to wear it as often as possible. It may sound strange, but it’s true. This is because the oils on your skin help to clean the metal, so it won’t tarnish.
But what about those old sterling silver pieces that you’ve only just dug out of your jewelry box? Don’t worry, because their sparkle can be restored easily, too. Simply buy a sterling silver varnish and use it with a clean, dry cloth to polish your jewelry and get it back to looking gorgeous.
7 It’s Affordable and Accessible
Good-quality, hallmarked sterling silver jewelry is not ultra-cheap, but is definitely a lot more affordable than most precious metals out there. Why? Because silver is mined more often than metals such as gold and platinum, and the metals used to create the sterling silver alloy are also quite inexpensive.
Pretty much any mall or jewelry store, in any city across the country, will sell sterling silver jewelry. Its popularity, versatility, and affordability make it very accessible and easy to get. So, if you’re on the hunt for a birthday present, or you want to treat yourself and expand your jewelry collection, then you should definitely consider buying a sterling silver item.
Ready to Start Buying Sterling Silver Jewelry for Your Collection?
Whatever your style, budget, and occasion, you can always count on sterling silver jewelry to make you look put together, fashionable, and timeless.
This metal is incredibly versatile, affordable, accessible, and hypoallergenic, and it can be either the perfect way to create a brand new jewelry collection, or used to expand one that you already have.
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